BOSTON - The 2018-19 Boston Bruins season was one that, in the early stages, is defined by its injuries. The marquee players of the team, including Patrice Bergeron, were sidelined for large swaths of the campaign. As a result, the Bruins were talented, but not at full strength for the majority of the year. When the team finally reached full strength, they went on an unparalleled tear that brought them all the way to game seven of the Stanley Cup Finals.

In the 2019-20 season, the Bruins have been more successful in sidestepping injuries (knock on wood) and, as such, first place has become a position they've been more comfortable with. Earlier in December, the Bruins weathered injuries suffered by Torey Krug and Patrice Bergeron, who ended up on the injured reserve. Now, they currently have to deal with defenseman Kevan Miller, on the IR after undergoing surgery on his kneecap and right-winger Karson Kuhlman, on the IR with a broken leg. Defenseman John Moore is currently day-to-day, as well. But the biggest injury news out of the Bruins camp is yesterday's announcement that veteran defenseman and captain Zdeno Chara will be out after an injury to his jaw.

Per Fluto Shinzawa of The Athletic, Chara is going to have surgery on his jaw. The procedure will cause him to miss tonight's game versus the Washington Capitals. Chara believes he will be able to return to the ice for the team's December 27 matchup against the Buffalo Sabres, but I'm a bit more skeptical. I know he is tough and he has played through jaw problems for some time now, but he is also 42-years-old. I have to think the franchise's medical team will want to be more careful with Chara.

The surgery is being conducted in the aftermath of the broken jaw suffered by Chara during the Stanley Cup Finals' fourth game. He continued in the series, but the wiring of his jaw and a complete facemask added to his gear for protection certainly limited his capabilities. After an infection formed in his broken jaw, the medical team decided that surgery was needed to treat it, as well as to remove the plates and screws from his jaw, per WEEI.

I think I join legions of Bruins fans in saying that we hope Chara recovers well and quickly after a successful procedure today!

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